Defiant LINBY COLLIERY WELFARE were happy with a fine draw and a solid away performance that made a mockery of their bottom-three travails in the Central Midlands League, South Division.
Few would have backed Linby -- just three wins in 25 matches -- to return home smiling against a Southwell City side, who have worked their way into the top five of the table in recent weeks.
But they pocketed a deserved 1-1 draw in a game of few clearcut chances, neatly supplementing the 4-2 defeat they inflicted on the same Southwell outfit at Church Lane back in August.
After saves at either end from goalkeepers Alex Smith (to deny Mason Frizelle) and Rhys Watkinson (to foil home dangerman Stef Whitley), Linby took the lead in the 37th minute. Good work by strike partners Kyle McDermott and Matt Murphy released Adam Fox for a one-on-one, and the youngster bravely slipped the ball past Smith into the bottom corner.
Fox was clattered into at the same time, prompting an argument that Fox should have been sent off. But he received only a yellow card from Derby referee Kevin Frampton.
After a stern dressing-down at half-time, Southwell emerged for the second period a different team and were level within two minutes. Linby failed to clear their lines, and Anthony Brown thumped a 20-yard drive that took a slight deflection before flying into the bottom corner off a post.
The visitors responded with two chances for Murphy, whose 20-yard shot flashed just wide before an effort from a long ball by Terry Henshaw was well saved.
As the match opened up, they continued to threaten, with a close-range shot from Ruban Mitchell being blocked on the line after a wonderful run by full-back Frizelle.
However, the closest either side came to a winner was when a 25-yard piledriver by Southwell scorer Brown ten minutes from the end bounced out off the bar.